Saturday, November 29, 2014

Christmas Card Photoshoot

One of these years I'll smarten up and hire a professional.  In the meantime, I am doing it on the cheap!  This year we are really trying to not spend all of our money, so I didn't even buy the kids new clothes.  Luckily, I had a pretty good selection already in their closets to choose from.  Audrey got to wear one of Maggie's dresses, and you'd better believe that made her day.  Maggie's, not so much.

Eric was our location scout, and quite honestly, we got in the car and started driving.  We stopped in a couple different places, and really pushed the kids to their limit.

I was going to get a picture of all the kids individually in their outfits, but somehow forgot?  Here are Amos and Maggie anyway.

Second and Third runner up (with first place outtake):

If only Ward would have been in this one:

Out of the hundreds of pictures I took, I got one with proper lighting, and all four kids looking: Coming soon to a Christmas card near you!

Since the kids were such good sports we stopped at the Sultan bakery for a cookie on our way home.  The Sultan bakery came highly recommended and it did not disappoint.  We may have re-shoots just to get to go back to the bakery.

Thanksgiving 2014

Some years the turkey fits in the oven and that is a good thing.

Thanksgiving was pretty low key this year.  Nan and Pop Horne came to visit from Pennsylvania and its a good thing because it really would have been a non-event without them. 

Ward's crib/sleeping situation was at its peak during the Thanksgiving break, so it was pretty understandable that he crashed out every day while Nan and Pop were here.

I did a terrible job of taking pictures, but we pretty much looked like this:

Unless we were eating.

Ward is a Kid Now!

Last week, shortly after putting Ward in his crib for his nap, I heard a knock. From the inside of his door. I literally screamed, "NO!!!!!!!" Ward is officially no longer containable. It is the worst. I'm pretty sure it was just the week before all this that I said, "Ward is going to kill me, thank heavens for his naps." Nap time is no more. It's been nice knowing you all...

Today I turned Ward's bed into a toddler bed, and we are officially a crib-less house. I'd prefer diaper-less, but I am grateful for every milestone we pass never to see again.  Except for maybe this one.

As I was working on the crib today, Audrey came into the room.  She asked what I was doing, and when I told her she ran from the room screaming:

"Ward is a kid now! Maggie, Ward is a kid now!!!"

He is.

We Like the Sauce!

My sister, Liz, has long been an applesauce making pro.  Until she started, I wouldn't have known applesauce was something one could make on one's own.  When we lived in Utah, I was able to make it up to Idaho to make applesauce with her, and always wished it was something I could do on my own. 

Enter Washington.  If I am going to live in Washington with all it's apples, I might as well figure out the sauce making.  It took some friends offering to let us pick out their tree for me to get motivated, but I bought the kitchenaid attachment and am loving it.  So slick.

I got one more free batch of apples from a woman in town, and after two trial runs, I've got the sauce making figured out.  Fantastic.

The hardest part is talking the kids out of "helping." ;)

Haircuts No Longer Make the Cut

I miss the days when I had time to blog the minutia like is seriously kicking my butt this fall.  There was a small release of pressure as the big kids started school, but new things find their way onto our schedule every day.  And then there is toddler Wardie.  He is seriously a force.  He is bringing back some distant memories of one Amos Horne at this age.  I had a lot less on my plate when we were doing it with Amos though. 

In the spirit of a past life, here are some haircut pictures:

I didn't even get an after of Ward.  Or a before of Audrey!  Audrey's hair was so long though, and the battle to get her to let me brush it was just too much.  As I threatened to chop it off mid-battle she said, "ok!"  We've both been happier since.

Maggie is 6!

Earlier this month Miss Maggie turned 6! She is having a GREAT year, and I am so proud of her.  She is a really sweet, funny girl. She graduated from Disney Junior to the Disney Channel and I have to say, I am not hating the new programming. Maggie loves art, and anything creative. She has finally stopped destroying the house in the name of art, and is much more responsible with her creations these days. She loves Kindergarten, and is doing really well in school. One of her favorite games to play is school with Audrey.

On her birthday, Ward gave the best present of all by saying "Maggie" for the first time.  Up to that point he hadn't said any of the kids' names yet, so it was a big deal.  He's kept saying it ever since and it's really sweet.

Aside from having to wait until after dance class to open her presents, Maggie had a great day and loved being the princess.

Happy Birthday 6 girl!

Saturday, November 15, 2014

Halloween 2014

Is it just me, or is Halloween getting super huge?  So many parties and events come with it these days.  For us it's all good, the more chances to wear our costumes, the merrier.

The first event for us this year was the ward Trunk or Treat.  Generally, one of my most favorite events, it was so sad to be surrounded by strangers and in an uncomfortable situation in our new ward.  I really, really miss they days in Springville when it was our kids and all of their BFFs.  And it wasn't pitch black.  Or raining.

The kids had a great time though, and I cannot believe how much candy they got!

There was lots of robot dancing, as you might imagine.  Wardie got pretty good at it.

Poor Audrey cannot catch a photogenic break these days. 

"Put it in the bucket."

"In the bucket."

"Huh? Ok."


Of course it rained during the "trunk or treat" portion of the evening, so the kids came home looking like drowned rats.  Very happy drowned rats.

We had just settled into bed with our candy when the power went out (and stayed out for over 24 hours, not unusual).  We have a generator, so we only needed the lantern for the 5 minutes it took Eric and Amos to get the power back on, but the girls thought it was pretty great.

The next event of Halloween was pumpkin carving.  Kids love it, I loathe it (much like Easter egg dyeing).  So much mess.

At least they're cute.  Probably about they time they stop being so spazzy they'll also stop being that cute.  Balance in all things.  Ward slept late that night, which was a gift.  He spent most of pumpkin mess time eating his dinner.

This year, we were SO lucky to make it to the school for ALL of the Halloween festivities.  I helped in Amos' class and Eric took Ward and Audrey to the party in Maggie's class.  It was crazy chaos, but so fun.

Amos is dead center:

Part of the celebrations is a Halloween parade.  The classes file through the other classes one at a time, then they join the end of the parade and continue on until the whole school is parading.  It's fun, and it worked out pretty great that Kindergarten and First grade were right in a row.  

Wardie managed to join the parade and it was super cute.  

Maggie on parade:

Second to last event of Halloween was trick or treating downtown.  It's really one of my most favorite things in Duvall. This year we got so lucky and it was a beautiful afternoon.

After dinner downtown, Eric dropped Ward and I off at home, and he took the big kids out trick or treating.  They made out like bandits once again, and we're still swimming in Halloween candy.